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Category Archives: Data


Sales Game Shares 17 Helpful Tips to Reach C-Level

by on August 9, 2012  

Sales Game Helps You Sell

Image courtesy of InsideView

I like good infographics about sales and marketing. It’s primarily because I am a visual learner, and because I love the art and science of business-to-business selling. So it did not go unnoticed that the Game of Sales, a clever Infographic created by Inside View has been viewed and shared thousands of times since it just debuted hours ago.

Read it closely, new reps because it holds great lessons within. For starters, I have to say that I take exception to the generalizations about cold calling – we all know that cold calling is alive and well, it’s alive – except that it is now preceded with a tiny bit of research and is called warm or targeted calling. As a very successful inside sales rep, I never bullied the receptionist or gatekeeper, and even today, when need be, we pick up the phone and usually always reach our intended party.

However, we know it is 2012 and buyers are on the web doing research about us and our industry counterparts. We need to do our own better research and find ways to add value to any interactions we have. This brings us to the 17 tips in the Infographic. I’m going to highlight 2 of my favorite tips –

1. Circumstances where Senior Business Executives Would Accept a Phone Call from a Salesperson –

best bet: with a recommendation from someone INSIDE the company.

next best bet: a referral from outside the company

worst chance: a direct telephone call from a salesperson

2. Before contacting someone, you should fully understand their industry, primary business goals, and company size.

Salespeople really need to work on this one (#2), so my hat’s off to InsideView for reminding the profession and b2b sellers everywhere of this. That includes follow up from conferences and events. You just won’t get anywhere with the tired, old generalized scripted follow-up call.  What amazes me though, is that sellers are still using them. In technology sales.

I got one yesterday. The guy on the phone told me I had attended a webinar in May. Really, I thought?  He wanted to know if I remembered it. I barely remember July. Then he went into a scripted pitch. I stopped him and told him I was going to interrupt so I could ask him what he really wanted. We got to the bottom of things (his sales call) and I saved both he and I several minutes or more of our lives. He probably won’t be calling me back, but then again, he did get some good sales education. I hope he takes it to heart.

InsideView took a lighthearted approach to educate the masses, and I applaud them. If you see other Infographics or fun ways to educate front-line sales people and sales leadership, please send them our way. Also, post your thoughts about this one.
Game of Sales
Infographic: Game of Sales InsideView

 

Lori Richardson - Score More SalesLori Richardson is recognized as one of the “Top 25 Sales Influencers for 2012″ and one of “20 Women to Watch in Sales Lead Management”. Lori speaks, writes, trains, and consults with inside and outbound sellers in technology and services companies. Subscribe to the award-winning blog and the “Sales Ideas In A Minute” newsletter for tips and strategies in selling.

 

Big Data Can Help CRM Users Gain More Deals – New Insights

by on August 6, 2012  

Big Data for B2B Sales is a Big DealNearly 80% of companies polled in a new Big Data study find CRM ineffective at helping find external company information.

Sales reps are searching as many as 15 different data sources for information on customers and prospects. Reps are on information overload.

82% of those surveyed believe that sales reps are challenged by the amount of information and the time it takes to research prospects prior to making contact.

These were some of the big findings by the report titled, CSO Insights 2012 Impact of Data Access on Sales performance Report: Why Big Data Should Be a Big Deal for Sales, sponsored by Lattice Engines. CSO Insights surveyed 218 CEOs, CSOs, sales execs and managers during June 2012 in an online study. Their findings make me think of how much data there is out there and how incredibly difficult it is now for any sales reps to be effective and efficient – it’s like walking the aisles of a huge data warehouse looking for that one piece of information to help you bring the most value to a buyer, and a deal to closure.

Other Key Findings:

35% of the participants have implemented technology to bring both internal and external information to sales reps, and their win rates are nearly 8% higher than companies without the technology.

You can download the study here.

What this means:

Everyone talks about finding trigger events at prospective client companies but it seems that many sales reps struggle to get this information. Understanding when things change at a target company is a critical need and one that is not easy to find.

We need to find better ways to help sales reps fill in the gaps between the data they can gather through their CRM system and the data they need to hold intelligent, value-added conversations with the companies they want to work with.

Critical information that sales reps want and need are in keeping contact information current, tracking business changes, and market changes.

Jim Dickie, a noted expert in the B2B sales insight business and managing partner of CSO Insights said, “Big data needs to be a big deal for sales. The amount of prospect information out there today is a blessing and a curse for sales reps. Our research shows that there is a need for new tools to help reps find the needle int he haystack. Leading-edge sales teams are already taking advantage with solid returns.”

The Big Data revolution is here. Find tools that work for you and your sales team to let you know critical information and if you do, revenues can go up, you’ll bring more business to closure, and your existing clients will appreciate your value more.

Lori Richardson - Score More SalesLori Richardson speaks, writes, and trains on sales strategies for B2B mid-market technology front-line sales teams. Why not sign up for our twice-monthly newsletter, “Sales Ideas In A Minute or the award-winning blog rss feed?